Barcelona's magician Lionel Messi will be wearing a unique pair of adidas boots for the UEFA Champions League final against Juventus on Saturday June 6. These special football weapons are designed by the forward himself and are named the adidas MESSI15 boots.
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With unmatched skill and uncontrollable ability, he needs the ultimate weapon on his feet. That’s why adidas has created a silo designed solely with the Argentine in mind.
Messi has swept aside all before him in 2015, and this weekend he will attempt to win the UEFA Champions League for a fourth time. When the 27-year-old takes the field in Berlin, his new footwear will make the most of his brilliance.
The adidas MESSI15 has been designed with Leo Messi himself to maximise his unmatched talent. A selection of totally new product innovations makes this the perfect weapon for the Argentinian.
The new messiTOUCH material which makes up the upper has an x-ray surface for lethal grip, stability and foot-fitting comfort.
The unique new messiFRAME provides a locked-in fit, stability and maximum traction.
The messiPRINT offers new, round forefoot studs, which alongside the messiGAMETRAX combine to provide a dynamic stud configuration and outsole that delivers explosive movement for the dynamic player.
At a time when the ICC’s plans to banish associate members into cricketing wilderness have gained significant attention, an examination of the affiliates and their future is both apt and much needed.
Cricket’s governing body is aiming to reduce the presence of its less illustrious national teams at the 2019 World Cup, making it even trickier for the likes of the UAE to return to the sport’s greatest stage.
Many feel that making the tournament a 10-team competition will see the crater grow even greater between the Test playing nations and their smaller siblings.
Tim Wigmore, Peter Miller, Gideon Haigh, Sahil Dutta and Tim Brooks have taken a look at those nations and the challenges they have faced and continue to face in Second XI – Cricket in its outposts.
Not only does this book trawl through the remarkable histories of Afghanistan, Nepal, Ireland, UAE, Papua New Guinea, China, Scotland, Netherlands, Kenya and USA, but it also looks at how these national teams have shaped the wider cricketing world.
And it does so by drawing on the experiences of those closest to the history of cricket in those countries.
Just a quick look at Miller’s acknowledgments for the UAE chapter substantiates this with the likes of ECB chairman David East, UAE coach Aaqib Javed, the ICC Academy’s Will Kitchen and The National’s Paul Radley all helping to contribute to the pages on cricket in the Emirates.
Speaking of Second XIs, word is this book is very good. Why haven’t you bought it yet http://t.co/nScxhtbup0
— Peter Miller (@TheCricketGeek) May 28, 2015
As a result, Second XI tells a story about the sport that is largely unheard outside of the big nations.
And these are stories that should not be missed.
From the Irish roots of the game being well established and then disregarded due to their English connotations, through Afghanistan’s sport at war and on to the UAE’s 1996 World Cup captain Sultan Zarawani facing up to Allan Donald in his prime in nothing but a sunhat (and then being suitably bumped on the bonce by a bouncer).
Highly entertaining, superbly informed and never more relevant, this book is needed for the growth of cricket outside of its elite.
Second XI also ticks all the boxes if you are interested in the far reach of sport, cricket and the countries that tend to be neglected.
With Haigh, Miller, Wigmore, Dutta and Brooks, you are in safe hands as a reader.
Nothing is left to chance and you feel no stone has been left unturned in the pursuit of a balanced collection.
VERDICT – 8/10
A superb look at cricket that lives largely in the shadows. The expertise of its authors and contributors makes this a must-read for cricket fans and those that hail from the countries involved, but more so for those that don’t. Expand those horizons (and you, the ICC!).
COST – Dhs44
WHERE TO BUY – Amazon.com
Nike has officially announced the launch of the new Al Hilal 2015-16 Home Kit.
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The partnership between the Kingdom’s most supported football club and the renowned global brand continues with the famous iconic blue jersey.
The new home shirt is a modern classic design. The shirt, shorts and socks all come in royal blue. The shirt is a Dri-Fit knit jersey and features a hybrid V-neck collar along with laser-cut ventilation holes and a mesh back panel.
“The new kit is beautiful and simple, with design details that respect the culture and history of Al-Hilal. The technology in the shirt also helps keep me dry, cool and comfortable, and ready to play at my best on the pitch," Salem Al Dosari comments.
“When I put on Al-Hilal team’s shirt it gives me a real sense of pride — representing the passionate club fans and supporters.”
Established in 1957, Al-Hilal is said to have a reputation for being the most widely supported club in Saudi Arabia. The Riyadh-based club holds 54 official championships which include a record 40 national championships, as well as a record six Asian Championships, and seven Arab and Arabian Gulf Championships.
While this new kit features Nike’s signature style and passion, it has also been designed to offer players the very latest in performance innovation, kit technology and environmental sustainability.
On this occasion, Nike and its official distributer Sun and Sand Sports have announced that The Al-Hilal new home kit will be available across Nike stores in Saudi Arabia starting as of May 31st, 2015. The Home Men Jersey starts at SAR 405 and the Home Boys Jersey starts at SAR 355.
NIKE DRI-FIT TECHNOLOGY AND INCREASED VENTILATION
Nike Dri-Fit technology embedded in the shirts draws sweat away from the body to the exterior where it quickly evaporates.
The shirts boast an engineered mesh consisting of thousands of tiny holes on the back to offer even more ventilation.
This allows players to always perform at their best by remaining cooler, drier and more comfortable throughout games.
This season the players will also benefit from a series of new design innovations in the kit that will increase air circulation around their bodies and better regulate their temperatures.
The shorts also offer increased ventilation with a mesh panel on the back, and the new side stripe on both sides also features small holes.
THE MOST ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY KIT EVER
This season, for the first time ever, Nike’s range of club shirts will now be made from 100% recycled polyester to further our commitment to reducing the impact on the environment.
The shorts will continue to be made from 100% recycled polyester, while the socks are 78%.
Each kit is made using an average of 18 recycled plastic bottles, which means that since 2010 Nike has diverted in excess of two billion of these bottles from landfill sites in to recycled polyester, enough to cover an estimated 3,500 football pitches.
This ongoing quest for environmental sustainability has seen the energy consumed in manufacturing the kits reduced by up to 30% compared to virgin polyester.
For more information visit nikebetterworld.com.